Opinion is split over whether showing the video created by B.C. teen Amanda Todd will create meaningful discussion in classrooms, or if it will be "traumautic stimuli" that may push some students over the edge.
A memo from the B.C. Education Ministry urges teachers not to show the YouTube video in classrooms due to concern for how it might affect vulnerable students, reports the Burnaby NewsLeader.
Todd, 15, created the video to chronicle how she was sexually exploited online and then bullied, both emotionally and physically for years. The Coquitlam teen killed herself earlier this month.
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"It is preferable that teachers do not show the YouTube clip in class," states the memo, which was sent to all B.C. schools on Oct. 14, reports the Vancouver Sun. The memo is authored by Theresa Campbell and Kevin Cameron, lead trainers in the province's Erase Bullying strategy.
They said the video could be "traumatic stimuli" for vulnerable students who've chosen not to watch it "because they know how on the edge they are already," said Cameron. But being forced to watch it in a classroom could create some risk for those students.
However, the B.C. Teachers' Federation says that tactic ignores the fact many kids have seen, or at least have heard of the video, and need to talk about it. Todd's video has already attracted more than 20 million views.
Federation president Susan Lambert acknowledged the video may not be appropriate viewing for younger students but it's a topic that needs to be discussed, and shouldn't be left to kids to deal with in private, she told the Sun.
On Monday, B.C. Education Minister Don McRae said it's up to the discretion of teachers and administrators to decide about showing the video, CBC News reported. He said the memo is not a directive, and suggested there are ways of discussing bullying and suicide without showing the video.
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